The Long Island Road Warriors are comfortable being the vagabond team of the Hamptons Collegiate Baseball League. And they are comfortable winning, too.
Last year’s champion moved into first place by beating the North Fork Ospreys 6-4 on June 20 to improve to 11-4 on the season; The Ospreys dropped to 6-8-2.
It was the fourth win in a row for the champs, and that figures, too. Coach Neal Heaton knows a thing or two about the game — he was a schoolboy legend at Sachem High School and went on to become a member of the University of Miami Hall of Fame. He won 80 games over 12 seasons in the big leagues.
By the way, Neal isn’t the only Heaton on the squad. His son, Garrett, a sophomore at SUNY Cortland, is also on the Road Warriors. He starred at Bellport High School and became a factor early in the fray when he singled in the first, advanced on a fly out, and scored on a passed ball.
North Fork moved ahead 2-1 on a two-run double by Oliver Tavares in the bottom of the third. A balk and passed ball resulted in two more runs.
But Long Island doesn’t go away. In the bottom Eric Tomakiko drove in one run and then Eric Roubal ripped a three-run dinger to make it a 5-4 affair.
Tristan Amone (Fairfield) took the ball from Liam Dvorak in the fourth and pitched masterfully, allowing only one hit through the final three innings to secure the win.
The victory left the Warriors a half-game up on the East Hampton Aviators (10-5) in the seven-team league.
By the way, think these kids aren’t top caliber prospects? The next night HCBL alumni Zach Godley won his eighth game of the season when the Arizona Diamondbacks beat Pittsburgh. That’s the big leagues, folks: major league baseball. Godley has already won 26 games.